Category Archives: polls and surveys

Language myths – who cares?

I’m reading (partly re-reading) the book Language Myths, edited by Laurie Bauer and Peter Trudgill, published in 1998. It includes 21 pieces by well-known linguists such as James and Lesley Milroy, Jenny Cheshire, Dennis Preston, John Algeo (apologies to the … Continue reading

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Just out: Proper English Usage

Lying on my desk since yesterday: Carmen Ebner’s PhD thesis, all shiny and new. It is the first proper book published in our research project. Congratulations, Carmen! And all the best with your defense on 5 September. You’ll do us … Continue reading

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Grammar Badgers

A few weeks ago, I gave a guest lecture through Skype for students at the University of Wisconsin. Interesting experience, and fantastic students they were. Their teacher, Anja Wanner, told me they were busy preparing an outreach project (obligatory at … Continue reading

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What kind/sort/type of word are these? Number concord across the species noun phrase in International Academic English

I’m Adrian Stenton, and I’m a PhD candidate at the Leiden University Centre for Linguistics, where I’m investigating number concord across the species noun phrase, as part of the project Bridging the Unbridgeable: a project on English usage guides, which … Continue reading

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Your Top 5 of grammatical errors in English?

Hielke Vriesendorp is a research master student of Linguistics at Leiden, who is trying to collect data for his paper for Ingrid Tieken’s MA course Testing Prescriptivism. To this end, he compiled a brief survey asking about people’s Top 5s of most … Continue reading

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Our latest interactive feature in English Today: Usage advice online

When in doubt about questions of usage, I do as I suppose most other people do as well: I google it. That is only, however, the starting point of most internet searches. What I wanted to find out when I … Continue reading

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A problem with soaring acceptance rates

Below follows Lingyun Lai’s first blogpost: Since Mittins et al., in their book Attitudes to English usage, reported an overall acceptability of 50 English usage items in 1970, no systematic replication research had been conducted, until, from 2011 onwards, the Bridging … Continue reading

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